Valparaíso is world famous for its breathtaking street art, so much so that the city has become one giant open-air workshop for artists both from Chile and around the globe. Now, you can contribute to the beauty of this colorful city personally! Local Guide Thomas and renowned local artist, Gigi, invite you to get creative and help paint one of the city’s walls.
To get to know both the art and history of this charming port city, Local Guide Thomas will give you a special walking tour, showing you the finest of Valparaíso's street art. Next, you will meet up with your local art teacher, where she can give you an insider’s look into the life of a street artist. Gigi was one of the first artists to start painting the city in the early 2000s and is an expert on all things Valparaíso and painting. She will give you a brief introduction, and then the fun can begin! With her assistance, you will get a chance to get creative and paint your very own wall. Step into the shoes of a street artist, and make your own mark on this celebrated bohemian city.
Born and raised in France, Chile has been my adopted home for over ten years now. When I first came here in 2005, the country stole my heart, literally because it is where I met my beautiful Chilean wife. At first, I started my life here working as a journalist, because that’s what I did in France. Yet, I felt like the career wasn’t right for me anymore, I had reached a point where I needed a job that would combine my skills in a new and exciting way. With the curiosity of a journalist, I began researching new career options until eventually, I decided to give being a tour guide a try. The career seemed like it would be a natural fit because I was fluent in three languages, loved history, and had a passion for discovering new things!
For about ten years now, I've worked as a guide, sharing my passion and knowledge of Chile with curious travelers from all over. While I have taken hundreds of guests on tours, my mission is to treat each as though they are my best friend. I want to customize my tours for my clients' exact hopes and desires. So don’t be shy, ask me anything! In fact, since I’m French, you can even ask me about my honest opinion on Chilean wines… you may be surprised by my answer, though!
I was born and raised in Santiago and Bellavista, where I now guide tours. Before I was a tour guide I worked as a traveling salesman and then as a private driver for the local high-end hotels. One day I received a call from a colleague asking me to guide a tour. At first, I was hesitant and thought he even called the wrong number but the next day he gave me some pointers on how to guide tours. After that first successful tour, I’ve been guiding travelers around my beautiful country ever since. When I think about being a tour guide I like to remind myself of a quote by Seth Godin, “People do not buy goods and services. They buy relations, stories, and magic.” I think of this as a motto for my life.
At home, I'm a family man with 2 sons, a daughter, and 5 grandkids. I love to cook for my family, especially fish, seafood, and vegetables with a Mediterranean touch. Chile is a 'wine country' and so I learned how to appreciate the good wines we produce and incorporate them into my cooking.
Thanks to my father, who was a French military officer, I lived abroad for many years during my childhood. I was in Germany for 13 years, England for three years, and Finland for three years. Moving around and discovering new places at a young age has given me the drive and passion to see more of the world.
I finally settled in Chile after working for big companies in France for several years and owning an English pub in Algarve, Chile. I have found in this splendid country everything I was looking for: kind people, the immense Andes, all kinds of climates and landscapes, and, best of all, my beautiful wife. Now, I have been a freelance guide in Chile since 2003. In my free time I spend my time reading about Chile, it’s medicinal plants, animals, geography, history, and more, in order to share my knowledge with all the clients who visit us. I also specialize in wines, Valparaiso, Santiago, and flora and fauna. I chose to work as a guide for these unique interactions I have with travelers.